As a writer, my first completed novel is based on a book I found in a junk pile at an antiquarian book auction. Its home is now on my crowded shelves. The book is as worn and abused as it could be without falling apart--it has no title page, the first page is numbered sixteen, and its cover is hand stitched onto its spine. But that little scrap pad inspired me and changed my life--I decided to write a novel based on what could have happened in its lifetime.
As an antiquarian-book seller, I love to find homes for stray books. I found a distant home, in Japan, for a beautiful book of Japanese poetry and woodblock prints. The new owner said, "It is home. It will gladden the hearts of my ancestors." The $400 I made helped pay for a trip to Oregon for a family reunion.
I sold a book titled Dottie Dimple Goes to School, to a man who collects any book that includes the words "Goes to School" in the title. The new owner is an elementary school teacher. I made about $1.45 on the sale. At least I got a good laugh out of it.
A Botany book--about native plants of Florida--found its home on a remote island off the coast of Alaska. The man who bought that three-pound tome was a field biologist, whose next job was in Florida. He was thrilled to find the volume and thanked me for going through the hassle of shipping it by boat and triple wrapping it to save it from the salt air. Perhaps he was also glad to be heading south after the long northern winter. I only netted about $10 on that deal but was glad to net another story. I believe the efforts I made contributed in a small way to science.
So, you see, books can find their way home again. My job is to nudge them in the right direction.
More posts will appear here about once or twice per month. Thanks for visiting.
Till next time, Katherine Ann Porter